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Help me choose the right receiver

1011 Views 4 Replies 3 Participants Last post by  thestoneman
Hi gang,

I currently have a HK AVR 630, and I was quiet pleased with the unit but it is starting to go. 2 of the Toslink ports on the back are gone and occasionally the unit get stuck when increaseing volume (when I hit volume up on the remote it will not stop going up until I shut off the unit). I have decided to purchase a new received and have been doing some research but it further confuses me so I may need some advise/help.

Here is my current setup:

- 52" Sony Bravia LCD XBR4 (1 yr old) with 120mhz motionflow

- Octavia HDMI and Toslink splitter x4 - This way I have plenty of toslink and HDMI connections

- Ascend Accoustic speakers (7 of them I run a 7.1)..I feel the AVR 630 did not power them enough

- SVS sub

- PS3 (HDMI + Toslink), Wii (component + RCA), XBOX 360 (component + Toslink), HTPC (HDMI + Toslink), Bluray Player (HDMI + Toslink) and a Directv HD Receiver (HDMI + Toslink)

I obviously use Toslink for everything because my current HK AVR 630 did not have HDMI capabilities so maybe with the new receiver I can.

Should the new receiver be able to pass sound through HDMI? Is this recommended?

I would like a receiver that has good video capabilities as I will use it as a passthrough, unless you guys feel I shouldnt (Maybe the Sony does a good job of this)?

I was thinking of getting either a flagship receiver or a low end receiver with an amp. What would you recomend for my setup? Price isn't really an issue as I want quality and something that will last for years.

I was thinking of one of the following setups but I am open to other opinions:

Yamaha RX-V3900

Onkyo TX-NR906

Denon AVR-3808CI

HK AVR 354 + an Amp

Any help would be appreciated and thanks for reading!
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A big question I have is:

Will a receiver upscale or present better video quality if I run all the video sources through the receiver versus my Sony Bravia XBR4?

If that is the case, then I can ignore video specifications and focus on audio?
If an AVR specification says HDMI passthrough, avoid it as it means it does not process audio via HDMI, but merely passes it to the TV.

If you do video in Through mode, it means it skips video processing and passes it unmolested. Not many receivers will upscale the video better than your TV, so I would be too concerned about that feature.
Last questions (I hope),

I currently have 7.1 setup. I'm thinking of pulling the trigger on the Onkyo SR806 and emotiva amp seperate, XPA-5. This is obviously a 5 channel amp not 7 (I did not like their 7 channel amp spec). Is it NOT recommended to use 5 channel on my Center, Front Left/Right, Rear Left/Right and use the receiver to power the Surround Left/Right?
I don't mean to hijack the thread, but I am also not sure what receiver will best serve my needs and I didn't want to clutter the board with a new(bie) thread. After lurking for a few weeks it has become apparent that I am NOT an audiophile and need help.

I have a 720p TV should I even be concerned with video upscaling?

I don't need a cutting edge unit, but I do have up to 4 figures to spend on a good receiver. I am looking for a good "all around" unit...which maybe going into a theater room in 2-4 years, but for now, it's going in a 15' x 15' area.
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